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Products > Plants - Browse By Region > Alpinia zerumbet
 
Alpinia zerumbet - Shell Ginger

Note: This plant is not currently for sale. This is an archive page preserved for informational use.  

[2nd Image]
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Perennial
Family: Zingiberaceae (Gingers)
Origin: Polynesia (Pacific Ocean)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: White
Bloomtime: Summer
Synonyms: [Alpinia speciosa, A. nutans, Catimbium speciosum]
Height: 6-8 feet
Width: Spreading
Exposure: Light Shade/Part Sun
Irrigation (H2O Info): High Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 15-20 F
Alpinia zerumbet (Shell Ginger) - This ginger displays its wildly fragrant waxy whitish-pink flowers in the late summer on arching stems. Grows to 6 to 8 feet tall and spreads by rhizomes. Plant in morning sun to light shade (tolerates full sun on coast) protected from wind, and water regularly to frequently. An evergreen perennial in Sunset zones 22-24. Creamy white flowers, tinged with pink and yellow (shaped somewhat like shells) appear in summer. Hardy to about 15-20 degrees F.It is a much faster grower than the other Alpinias we propagate. This plant was named after Prospero Alpino (1553-1616) a professor of Botany at Padua in Italy, an early, if not the very first, botanical garden. The specific epithet zerumbet is of Arabic origin and appears to have been first used by Serapion, an eleventh-century physician and scholar, for the aromatic roots of this family. This plant has been in cultivation in the West for over 200 years.  This description is based on our research and observations made of this plant as it grows in our nursery, in the nursery garden and in other gardens that we have visited. We will also incorporate comments received from others and always appreciate getting feedback of any kind from those who have some additional information about this plant, in particular if this information is contrary to what we have written or if they have additional cultural tips that would aid others in growing Alpinia zerumbet.